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Posts Tagged ‘g2

[LINK] “Astronomical gas cloud could finally reveal the truth about black holes at the centre of the galaxy”

This National Post article about the use of a cloud of gas to chart the black holes in the centre of the Milky Way Galaxy is cool.

Scientists have long suspected there are thousands of black holes at the centre of our home galaxy, the Milky Way, but have never been able to prove it. Now, thanks to a giant gas cloud, they may get the chance to find out.

“We know that there is a very massive black hole in the centre of the galaxy, many millions of times heavier than our Sun, and we also suspect that there are thousands and thousands much smaller — a few times the mass of the Sun,” Imre Bartos, a researcher at Columbia University and one of the key minds behind the project told the BBC.

Luckily, a giant gas cloud is going to give the scientists a way to find out. The G2 cloud is bigger than our entire solar system and is being sucked toward the supermassive black hole. Three times bigger than the orbit of Pluto around the sun, the G2 cloud was first spotted in 2011.

[. . .]

As the G2 moves toward the galactic centre, it will pass by the locations of the smaller theoretical black holes. At that point, if the black holes are actually there, the G2 cloud will spin off heat and gas which should be observable from Earth.

Written by Randy McDonald

May 31, 2013 at 7:29 pm